Red Wing man seeks judgeshipA Red Wing attorney announced Wednesday that he is running for a First Judicial District judgeship.
By: Mike Longaecker, The Republican Eagle
A Red Wing attorney announced Wednesday that he is running for a First Judicial District judgeship.
Lawrence Clark, an assistant Dakota County attorney, said he will challenge for Judge Timothy Blakely's seat, which is chambered in Red Wing.
Clark said he targeted the seat after the Minnesota Supreme Court sanctioned Blakely for funneling cases to his private divorce attorney in exchange for a smaller bill from her. Blakely recently returned to the bench after a six-month suspension.
"I never envisioned myself running against a sitting judge, but I now feel compelled to run for this office, in an effort to restore integrity and respect to the position," according to a statement on Clark's campaign Web site.
According to a press release, Clark has been a criminal prosecutor in Dakota County for 21 years and spent six years a Red Wing human rights commission. He and his wife, former Goodhue County DFL Chairwoman Colleen Clark, have been Red Wing residents since 1985.
Clark joins private attorney Stephen Baker in the First District race.
Baker, who served as the city of Red Wing's attorney during the late 1990s, announced his bid in March.
The Lakeville resident said he was a 23-year prosecutor during jobs in Minnesota and Florida. He stressed community outreach in his campaign announcement.
"It is essential for judicial candidates to have a very strong background of volunteering for one's community and serving people in need of help in our complex justice system," Baker said through a statement.
The race could make its first stop at the Aug. 16 primary if Blakely or another contender makes it a three-way contest. Court insiders last month told the Republican Eagle that Blakely would seek re-election, though he has not confirmed the report. He did not return a call Thursday seeking comment.
The First District includes Goodhue, Dakota, Scott, Carver, Sibley, McLeod and LeSeuer counties.